The acclaimed theatre and film director Chris Abraham of Toronto’s Crow’s Theatre discusses Seeds, a production playing at Vancouver’s PuSh Festival (22-26 January 2014), with Joseph Planta.
Text of introduction by Joseph Planta:
I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver, at TheCommentary.ca.
Another play at the PuSh Festival this week is Seeds. Staged by Montreal’s Porte Parole, the show from the playwright Annabel Soutar, will be playing the Fredric Wood Theatre at UBC January 22nd through to the 26th. The show is described as a docu-theatre work. Every word spoken is taken verbatim from court transcripts or interviews, surrounding the Saskatchewan farmer who goes to war with the agricultural company Monstano. You’ll recall in the 1990s, the story of Percy Schmeiser, who was accused of illegally growing Monsanto’s patented genetically modified canola. Seeds’s director Chris Abraham joins me now, and I’ll ask him about this production, the ingenious way it’s staged using multimedia elements, as well as its performers, chiefly Eric Peterson in the role of Schmeiser. The notices for the show, when it’s run in Montreal and Toronto have been quite good. Frequently lauded are the production values, performances, and the way the fierce legal battle between a farmer and a multinational is depicted, honestly, to the point where audience conceptions are challenged going into the theatre and throughout this play, and certainly once it’s over. Chris Abraham is the artistic director of the Crow’s Theatre Company in Toronto. He is an award winning theatre and film director, and was the recipient of the Siminovitch Prize, Canada’s richest performing arts prize. He received the Protégé Award 12 years ago as well. Visit www.pushfestival.ca for tickets and information, and www.crowstheatre.com. Please welcome to the Planta: On the Line program, Chris Abraham; Mr. Abraham, good morning.